With many of the world’s first smart meter deployments over a decade old, a unique meter market is fast-approaching, and in some places has already arrived: the smart meter “refresh” market. Over the next ten years, the world’s smart metering pioneers-the first utilities to deploy smart meters-will retire old models to redeploy new versions of advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) that will represent over a decade of technological advancement.
The replacement is necessitated by the approximately 15-year lifetime of smart meters, as we are now 15 years beyond the early 2000s, when the first smart meter rollouts began. The refresh market, at least through the forecast period of 2027, will mostly be limited to those countries that conducted large-scale rollouts prior to 2013-a market that represents tens of millions of meters. These deployments will take place predominantly in Italy, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, the United States, Canada, and Australia.
Deployments will also take place in Eastern Europe (primarily Russia, Ukraine, and Bulgaria), Brazil, and Mexico. These early deployments began in the early 2000s but extended in some cases through 2012, pushing the forecast start of the most distant upcoming refresh rollouts to 2027.
However, the design, procurement and commissioning of meters and metering systems is a process lasting several years. The upcoming installations (which have already begun in select markets) will be the first of their kind, distinct in several ways from the first go-around of deployments. In some cases, all AMI components will be replaced, while in other cases only meter hardware.
Communications infrastructure could be changed, or more responsibility could be entrusted to the vendor through an ongoing, managed services agreement.
Pre-existing relationships with vendors could play a role, but utilities will competitively bid new tenders. Vendors that served the initial projects - including Aclara, Honeywell (formerly Elster), Itron, Landis+Gyr, Sensus, and others - will compete for this market opportunity both with each other and new market entrants such as Chinese vendors.
Key questions answered in this study:
- Where will the refresh market take place and how large will the refresh market be?
- How soon will the refresh market materialize and will it be sustained?
- How will refresh rollouts differ from first -time rollouts?
- What vendors are positioned to supply the market?
Table of Contents
i Executive summary
1. Refresh market overview
2. Refresh market forecast
3. North America
4. Western Europe
5. Other regions
6. Vendor landscape
List of Figures and Tables
Refresh market: myth versus reality
Smart meter refresh market: Key takeaways
Key countries to lead smart meter refresh rollouts
Figure 1.1: RF-based AMI cost breakdown
Figure 1.2: Cost comparison across refresh rollouts
Table 1.1: Benefits of managed services
Table 1.2: Status of refresh cycle rollouts
Figure 1.3: State of Pennsylvania advanced metering requirements
Figure 1.4: Approximated smart meter timeline
Figure 1.5: PPL argument to implement RF Mesh over PLC
Table 1.3: PPL refresh rollout participating vendors
Figure 1.6: PPL smart meter timeline
Figure 1.7: Drivers of PPL refresh rollout
Figure 1.8: Examples of opposition to AMI rollouts
Figure 2.1: RF-based AMI cost breakdown
Figure 2.2: Global AMI refresh deployments (annual)
Figure 2.3: Global refresh market by region (cumulative)
Table 2.1: Global refresh market by region ($M)
Figure 2.4: Global refresh market by segment (cumulative)
Table 2.2: Global refresh market by segment ($M)
Figure 3.1: North America refresh market forecast by country (cumulative)
Table 3.1: North America refresh market forecast by country (cumulative)
Figure 3.2: North America refresh market forecast by country (annual)
Table 3.2: North America refresh market forecast by country (annual)
Table 3.3: Upcoming AMI refresh deployments by large US utilities
Figure 3.3: Forecasted AMI rollouts by US utilities
Table 3.4: Upcoming refresh rollouts in Canadian provinces
Figure 4.1: Western Europe refresh market forecast by country (cumulative)
Table 4.1: Western Europe refresh market forecast by country (cumulative)
Figure 4.2: Western Europe refresh market forecast by country (annual)
Table 4.2: Western Europe refresh market forecast by country (annual)
Figure 4.3: Italy’s smart meter timeline
Figure 4.4: Swedish AMI requirements to be met by 2025
Figure 4.5: Sweden AMI timeline & recent activity
Figure 4.6: Recent metering activity in Finland
Table 4.3: Deployments prior to 2013 elsewhere in Western Europe
Figure 5.1: Others refresh market forecast by country/region (cumulative)
Table 5.1: Others refresh market forecast by country/region (cumulative)
Figure 5.2: Others refresh market forecast by country/region (annual)
Table 5.2: Others refresh market forecast by country/region (annual)
Table 6.1: Key vendors positioned to supply refresh market
A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes: